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Seoul government steps up inspections for hidden cameras

The Seoul Metropolitan Government said Sunday it will expand the scope of inspections for hidden cameras from public places to private establishments as part of efforts to strengthen the crackdown on the criminal act.

The move broadens the target of inspections from places like washrooms in subway stations and swimming pools to shopping malls, exhibition halls and universities. The city government has been running the service since August 2016, employing 50 female inspectors. 

Female inspectors search through washrooms for hidden cameras. (Yonhap)
Female inspectors search through washrooms for hidden cameras. (Yonhap)

Institutions that want to undergo a search can send an email to the city government ( with consent from the facility’s owner or management. Upon receipt of the email, an inspector will either visit the facility or lend surveillance equipment, such as an electromagnetic waves detector or infrared detector, free of charge. Private residences are not eligible for the service.

The Seoul Metropolitan Government’s team of inspectors probed nearly 58,000 spots in some 17,000 buildings in the capital city from January through November last year, and found no hidden cameras.

“Even if we don’t find any hidden cameras, the news of the inspection has a deterrent effect on preventing their installation,” said Seoul government official Ko Kwang-hyun.

The city also said the service will be available to accommodation businesses such as motels, which operate through computer and mobile applications.

By Joel Lee (
Korea Herald Youtube